8/16/2006

Free Health Care!

I came across an interesting article the other day while waiting for a doctor's appointment. It was printed in "Peaks & Plains" an airline magazine produced by Great Lakes Airline.

Thanks to the wonder of the internet, I was able to find "A Different Perspective on Health Insurance" online. The author, Peter DeHaan, makes several great points.

First, he discusses the "right" to health care:

Wait a minute, we have a right to health care? Is it in the Constitution? Is it listed in the Bill of Rights? No, health care is not a right, but asserting that it is serves as an effective rallying cry for those who feel under-insured. People who do not enjoy this “right” imagine themselves as victims and in need of a champion to rescue them from their implied substandard existence.
It's really quite amazing if you stop and think about it: 50 years ago our parents understood for the most part that if you want something you have to pay for it. That includes doctor visits, health insurance, and medicine.

Yet, as time has marched on and our parents became our kids' grandparents, something changed. Driven by lefty politicians and, more recently, by lefty editorial writers, we now have a new mindset that health insurance and health care are somehow different from other commodities. Our society thinks that every man, woman and child is entitled to top notch medical care and, if necessary, that it be free.

Apparently the collectivist political agenda is so powerful that it defies the laws of economics. (I am just hoping the editorial writers turn their attention to Corvettes next.)

He then moves on to discuss (correctly) the nature of an insurance contract:

According to Webster’s, insurance is the “coverage by contract whereby one party undertakes to indemnify or guarantee against loss by a specified contingency or "peril.” The key words here are “contingency or peril.” Let’s look at some examples.

I have insurance on my house that will replace it if it is destroyed or suffers major damage. Without insurance, losing a home would be a financially devastating hardship. My homeowner’s policy doesn’t cover repairs or maintenance; those are things I can afford to pay myself.

My cars are insured as well. When they are new, I have full coverage in the event of a major accident. The thought of needing to unexpectedly shell out tens of thousands of dollars to replace a car is sufficient justification to pay for premiums with full coverage.

But people think health insurance is different. They think they should come out ahead on their health insuance dollars. Why?

Because the political left in this country has conditioned them to think in terms of entitlements. People get mad when they get bills from their doctors. "Someone else" should pay that expense. But "someone else" is always us. No one works for "free."

This whole issue really provides a microcosm of the basis for the ultimate failure of communist economic systems. Yet, here we go again, pushed down the path toward collectivist nirvana.

UPDATE: Maybe this is why?

UPDATE: Or maybe it's because we have "needs!"

2 comments:

Walter Greenspan said...

Or, could the reason "why" be because government schools have resulted in a general dumbing down, as illustrated by More Teens Can Name Three Stooges Than Can Name Three Branches of Governmen

Eric said...

Why should anybody work, if all the necessities of life are free?